Mayo Clinic hospice and palliative medicine fellows in classroom

The training for Mayo Clinic's Hospice and Palliative Medicine Fellowship consists of 12 months of clinical training, complemented by a research experience.

Rotation schedule

The rotations include:

Rotation Length
Inpatient consultation service 5 months
Inpatient hospice service 3 months
Pediatric inpatient service 1 month
Electives 3 months

Elective rotation opportunities include, but are not limited to:

  • Pain service
  • Hematology and oncology
  • Neurology and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) clinic
  • Cardiology
  • Pulmonary clinic
  • Pediatric palliative care
  • Integrative medicine
  • Psychiatry
  • Spiritual care
  • Research
Mayo Clinic Hospital in Phoenix, Arizona

Rotation descriptions

Palliative care consultation service

You spend five months on the inpatient Palliative Care Consultation Service. During this rotation, you see patients with advanced illness to assist in symptom management and goals-of-care discussions. Consultations are requested from a breadth of medical and surgical services. Fellows are an integral part of the multidisciplinary teams, which consist of physicians, advanced practice providers, nurses, social worker, chaplain and pharmacist.

Outpatient clinic

You participate in a weekly half-day clinic. The clinic appointments consist of 90-minute new consultation visits and 30-minute follow-up appointments. In addition to the nursing staff, the outpatient clinic is supported by a full-time social worker and chaplain.

The outpatient clinic serves patients with the complete spectrum of serious illness, including but not limited to:

  • Cancer
  • Heart failure
  • Dementia
  • Renal failure
  • Advanced lung disease
  • Neurodegenerative diseases

Hospice experience

We are fortunate to have an inpatient hospice palliative care unit located on the Mayo Clinic campus. Sherman Home is a 12-bed unit managed in collaboration with Hospice of the Valley, which has 10 inpatient units across the metro area. Two of these units are dedicated to specific patient populations.

  • Ryan House — a pediatric hospice home
  • Gardiner Home — a hospice home for patients with dementing illnesses

As a part of the hospice experience, you complete two weeks of home hospice visits.

Minnie and Armond Sherman Hospice House

Pediatric experience

You complete a one-month rotation at the Phoenix Children's Hospital (PCH). You will be working with the palliative care team at PCH assisting in symptom control and goals of care discussions with critically ill infants and adolescents.

Call frequency

There is no in-house call during the fellowship. You have phone call one night a week during the first six months of the fellowship. This will graduate to two nights a week during the latter six months of the fellowship. You are on call one weekend a month.

Research training

Research opportunities at Mayo Clinic are outstanding. During the course of this fellowship, you will receive direction to develop and complete a research or quality improvement project under the close mentorship of one of our experienced clinician-researchers.

Didactic training

  • Palliative Medicine Grand Rounds. Weekly didactics cover a broad range of topics that are of interest to the palliative care provider, including radiation therapies, advanced heart failure therapies, new and novel symptom control regimens, and resiliency training. Grand Rounds also includes a morbidity and mortality conference twice a year.
  • Journal club. This is a monthly lunchtime conference that includes palliative medicine, radiation oncology and hematology/oncology fellows. It is attended by faculty from each group.
  • Tri-site conference. This is a monthly webcast case conference/journal club that includes the palliative medicine faculty and fellows from Mayo Clinic's campuses in Minnesota, Florida and Arizona.
  • Survival Series workshops. This is a series of hourlong lectures hosted at the begining of the year to start the fellows off with key information and skills that they will use throughout the year.
  • PalliTALK. You attend a three-day intensive communication workshop held in Madison, Wisconsin. All your participation, hotel, meals and transportation are covered by the fellowship. This outstanding opportunity affords palliative medicine fellows intensive training in expert-level communication in a fun and relaxed setting that also fosters networking among fellow trainees.
  • Other learning opportunities. Learning opportunities abound at Mayo. You are strongly encouraged to attend Internal Medicine Grand Rounds, Psychiatry Grand Rounds, Cancer Center Grand Rounds and Neurology Grand Rounds, as subjects relevant to your training are presented. You are encouraged to participate in the Transplant Selection Committee meetings if this is an area of interest.
  • Patient education resources. You are encouraged to experience the patient-based education resources at Mayo Clinic, including the Grief Support Group and the Caregiver Class.
Mayo Clinic Hospital atrium in Phoenix, Arizona


Mayo Clinic provides outstanding support for you to attend national meetings. You are allotted up to five days to attend a national meeting, such as the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine Annual Assembly. Additional days are provided if you have scholarly research that has been accepted for presentation at a regional or national meeting.

Teaching opportunities

You have ample opportunity to engage in teaching palliative medicine to your colleagues. You may be asked to present at various resident and nurse forums. You may also wish to participate in community education programs.


To ensure that you acquire adequate knowledge and develop the appropriate technical skills to meet program expectations, your performance is monitored carefully during the Hospice and Palliative Medicine Fellowship. You are formally evaluated by supervising faculty members after each clinical rotation and meet quarterly with the program director to review these evaluations. In addition, you regularly evaluate the faculty and each rotation to confirm that your educational needs are being met.

July 14, 2017